Rockwood Music Hall
Jamie McLean Band
From Madison Square Garden to Bonnaroo to Japan’s Fuji Rock, Jamie McLean’s musical footprint has marked every corner of the globe. Performing alongside musical icons such as Elvis Costello, Widespread Panic, and Dave Matthews, he has shared the stage with scores of prevalent names in the industry. Always in high demand, McLean has also lent his studio chops to everyone from Norah Jones to Chuck D, proving he is the quintessential workingman’s guitarist. Backed by a dynamic voice loaded with soul, McLean’s transformation from sideman to front man has been seamless. With drops of southern roots rock, blues, R&B, funk and soul oozing from their amplifiers, the Jamie McLean Band offers “honest rock and roll” that pulls no punches. Night in and night out, Jamie McLean’s performances are smothered in soul and confident command of the six-string. Take the straightforward, no-nonsense rock of the Rolling Stones and The Black Crowes and mix in the personal sincerity of Ryan Adams and Tom Petty and the result is the Jamie McLean Band.
Best known for providing his tasteful guitar textures to the New Orleans based jazz outfit the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, along with the Jamie McLean Band, McLean’s fret board mastery has garnered worldwide praise. The early years of the Jamie McLean Band saw Jamie splitting time between the extensive touring schedule of the Dirty Dozen Brass Band all while managing his own band’s schedule. Now, the Jamie McLean Band is priority number one. With a new album, American Heartache, ready to be unleashed, Jamie McLean picks up right where he left off on his previous releases, 15 Minutes and This Time Around. Featuring twelve blistering cuts of that classic Jamie McLean sound, he grips and rips the necks of his squadron of Gibson guitars for that “heavy classic rock sound” he’s always loved. Supplementing his twangy, southern rock infused guitar passages is a commanding voice packed with New Orleans soul and New York City swagger. McLean’s songwriting on his second full-length album showcases years of musicianship, running the gamut of southern infused rock and roll (Can You Hear Me Now, Garden of Thieves) to longing ballads (Don’t Do Me That Way, Bottle of Love) and everything in between. Recorded in March and April at the famed Allaire Studios with producer Stewart Lerman (Rufus Wainwright, Richie Havens) at the helm, American Heartache is clearly Jamie’s best work to date. “Stewart was able to really steer the ship in the right directions. He helped to make the music really focused so that each song had its own character and each song was as strong and concise and meaningful as possible,” states Jamie. Featuring special guests Luther Dickinson (The Black Crowes, North Mississippi All-Stars), the Dirty Dozen Brass Band and vocalist Shannon McNally, McLean is in the company of good friends on this record.
Returning to the place where he first recorded with the Dirty Dozen Brass Band (Medicated Magic, 2001), McLean once again captures the magic of the hallowed recording grounds. “Recording American Heartache at Allaire was a dream come true. Allaire is the most inspiring location I've ever been to write and record music,” recounts McLean. “Obviously the equipment, the staff and rooms are top of the line but there is something magical that happens on that mountain.” The beautiful, isolated setting deep in the Catskill Mountains of New York allowed the Jamie McLean band to focus solely on the music and create the album they always wanted to make. “For our first record, This Time Around, we were still very young as a band and we recorded the album in a much shorter period of time. I'm glad we recorded This Time Around the way we did but with American Heartache I wanted to be able to sit with the music more in the studio.” The result is an album loaded with twelve solid cuts and no filler. “Knowing that amazing artists like Norah Jones, The Black Crowes, My Morning Jacket, David Bowie and others recorded there was inspiring; but there was something bigger at work on that mountain and we could feel it.” American Heartache also features additional recording done in New Orleans during the New Orleans Jazz Festival. Shannon McNally’s sexy, smoky vocals were added after the singer happened to be strolling several blocks from where Jamie McLean was finishing up recording. The Dirty Dozen Brass Band’s dissonant horn section was also added during the session.